Concurso 1×1 announced the winner of their Arabic-Spanish translation competition, which was judged by ArabLit contributor Shadi Rohana:
The prize received 19 eligible translations of Mona Kareem’s poem “حدود.” and the winner was Marcela de Aguinaga Quiroz, who signed her entry as Tercios de rama.
Rohana wrote, in his commentary about the prize, that he judged on three criteria. As the poem is a clear one, the first filter he used was understanding of the Arabic. Those who made obvious mistakes were disqualified. His second filter was an understanding of the Spanish into which they were translating.
The third, he said, is a little more complex, “yet easy to detect; I also disqualified the translations that ‘Orientalize’ the poem.”
For example, Rohana writes, a translation of the poem that excessively used of the Spanish word “ojalá” was disqualified, as was one where the bath of childhood evoked in the poem — “a bathroom as modern, practical and miserable” as any in the Spanish-speaking world, he writes — became a hammam in the Spanish, was also disqualified.
The translation of Mona Kareem’s poem had to be clear, direct, precise, and lucid. And this is what Quiroz’s translation achieves. ¡Mabrukitaciones!
con un solo pie
en la orilla del excusado, casi no cabemos,
a la familia de al lado:
vemos a un hombre, a una mujer y a un niño
sus nombres, y cómo vivirán o qué objetos tendrán
a cuál habría elegido mi madre
si hubiera tenido sólo un hijo
a cuál habría recogido mi padre